Tokyo in May : Best Things to Do 2021
What to Do in Tokyo in May
Planning to visit Tokyo this May?? If yes, you should definitely check out our list of the latest travel info and best things to do in the city in 2021 May! Various special events are held this month including traditional Japanese festival, beautiful spring flowers and Golden Week events! Let’s plan a perfect trip in Tokyo with our 2021 May To-Do list!
Note: Some of listed places/events in Tokyo in May 2021 may change their operation hours/be closed or cancelled due to COVID-19. Please check official websites for the latest updates before visiting.
1. Golden Week
from late April to early May is “Golden Week” in Japan, which is a long holiday period formed with multiple public holidays. The great thing about the Golden Week is that there will be a plenty of special events in town which you may be entertained. The downside of it is that it’ll be very crowded everywhere. If you are travelling during the Golden Week period, put that in your mind 🙂
Check out the best Golden Week events in Tokyo:
2. Sanja Matsuri
Tokyo’s most energetic, loudest and wildest festival, Sanja Matsuri (三社祭) is back. The festival is held at Asakusa Shrine near Sensoji Temple in Asakusa area for 3 days usually on the third weekend in May, and invite about 2 millions viewers. The festival features a number of portable shrine (Mikoshi) carried through the streets of Asakusa neighbourhood with the lively and energetic atmosphere.
3. Kanda Matsuri <<Cancelled>>
Kanda Matsuri or Kanda Festival (神田祭) is one of the three great Shinto festivals of Tokyo, along with the Fukagawa Matsuri and Sanno Matsuri. It originally started in 17th century. The festival is held mid May every two years (in odd-number years), which means the festival is on this year. The festival takes place at Kanda Shrine and surrounding neighbourhood in Tokyo (around Akihabara and Tokyo Station), and about 200 mikoshi (portable shrines) are carried through in addition to musicians, dancers, and floats. Kanda Matsuri is held over a week, but the main event usually happens on weekend near 15 May.
Date: mid May
Note: Kanda Matsuri 2021 is cancelled due to coronavirus
4. Kameido Tenjin Shrine Wisteria Festival
Various flowers flourish in town during spring, and after cherry blossoms, it’s time for wisteria. Kameido Tenjin Shrine Wisteria Festival (亀戸天神社 藤まつり) is a popular flower festival held annually in Koto Ward, Tokyo. Over 100 wisteria flower bloom beautifully at the historical shrine site from late April to early May along with festival food stalls and special events.
Date: 17 April to 5 May 2021
5. Carp Streamer Tokyo Tower
Carp streamer (Koinobori) is a traditional item to celebrate Children’s Day (5th May) in Japan, and streamers are displayed at many location during Golden Week season. At the base of Tokyo Tower, 333 colourful carp streamers are displayed from late March to early May.
Discount tickets: 6% OFF Tokyo Tower Ticket — Main Observatory Deck E-Tickets
Date: 25 March to 9 May 2021
6. Tokyo Skytree Town Koinobori Festival
Another popular landmark of Tokyo, Tokyo Skytree also hosting a special event with colourful carp streamers. Tokyo Skytree Town Koinobori Festival features approx 1,000 carp streamers collected from several cities across Japan and displayed on the foot of Tokyo Skytree. Over the Golden Week, special events, attractions and food vendors will be also available.
Date: 12 April to 9 May 2021
7. Strawberry Buffet
The season for Japanese strawberries continue through April, and the best way to enjoy delicious, juicy and exquisite Japanese strawberries is definitely strawberry dessert buffets. ANA InterContinental Tokyo, Hilton Tokyo, Grand Hyatt, etc, numbers of high end hotels in Tokyo offer tasty, creative and photo-worthy strawberry dessert buffets with their original themes, and guests can be indulged with deluxe strawberry desserts with all-you-can-eat style only in this time of the year.
Click the link below to find your favourite strawberry dessert buffet this year!
8. ANA InterContinental Tokyo Strawberry Sensation 2021
One of the most prestigious hotels in Tokyo, ANA InterContinental Tokyo hosts an annual strawberry fair “Strawberry Sensation” during winter and spring, offering a variety of desserts and dishes with strawberries at several venues in the hotel including Strawberry Buffet at The Champagne Bar, Strawberry Afternoon Tea Set at Atrium Lounge and Strawberry Afternoon Tea Boost at The Steakhouse.
Date: until 30 May 2021
9. Detective Conan Cafe
The 24th movie of the popular Japanese anime/manga series “Case Closed”, Detective Conan: The Scarlet Bullet will be released on 16th April 2021 after being delayed for one year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. To celebrate the new movie release, the limited-time Detective Conan Cafe will open at 7 locations in 4 cities in Japan including three locations in Tokyo: Omotesando, Shinjuku and Oshiage. The cafe offers the exclusive food and drink menu, original merchandise and special gifts for visitors.
10. My Hero Academia Exhibition DRAWING SMASH
My Hero Academia is one of the most popular Japanese mange series today, selling over 30 million copies in total (as of early 2021). Its first original art exhibition will be held at Mori Arts Center Gallery in Roppongi, Tokyo from April to June 2021. The My Hero Academia DRAWING SMASH exhibition displays original drawing by the manga artist, Kohei Horikoshi, installation art and video exhibition. The original merchandise will be also available exclusively at the exhibition. After Tokyo, the exhibition will be held in Osaka from 16 July to 5 September 2021.
Venue: Mori Arts Center Gallery
Date: 23 April to 27 June 2021
Hours: 12:00~20:00 *last admission at 19:30
Tickets: 2,000 yen (adult), 1,500 yen (high school and junior high school students), 1,000 yen (elementary school students)
Official Website: https://heroaca-ex.com/english/
11. Zootopia Cafe
Zootopia (also called Zootropolis) is an Oscar-winning Disney animation movie that was released in 2016. In 2021, to commemorate the 5th anniversary of the release of Zootopia, the limited-time theme cafe “Zootopia Cafe” will open in 3 cities in Japan (Tokyo, Osaka and Nagoya). The cafe offers special menu inspired by scenes and characters from Zootopia including Judy Hopps and Nick Wilde. Cafe’s original merchandise and a special gift for pre-booking are also available.
12. Maxell Aqua Park Shinagawa: NAKED FLOWER AQUARIUM
A popular aquarium in Tokyo, Maxell Aqua Park Shinagawa will be hosting a special event in a collaboration with a creative company, NAKED, Inc. for a limited time. NAKED FLOWER AQUARIUM features the fusion of sea creatures, light, sound and image using the latest digital art technology. Special program and contents will be available at several venues of the aquarium including fish tanks and dolphin show.
13. Vietnam Festival
Various international festivals are held at Yoyogi Park through spring and summer, and Vietnam Festival is one of the events people most anticipate. The Vietnam Festival features traditional Vietnamese folk art, special performances by Vietnamese musicians, and of course delicious Vietnamese food.
Access: 10 mins walk from Harajuku Station or Yoyogi Koen Station
Date: 22 and 23 May 2021
14. Thai Festival (TBA)
The Thai Festival is one of the biggest international festivals in Japan, which is held at Yoyogi Park annually. The festival features about 100 booths selling delicious Thai food, drinks and Thai crafts as well as live performances on the stage.
Date: TBA (early May)
15. Niku Fes (TBA)
One of the largest food festivals in Tokyo, the Meat Festival (Niku Fes) is held during the Golden Week period at Komazawa Olympic Park in Tokyo annually. The “borderless” food event features various meat dishes from different countries and genres. From premium Wagyu beef to plant-based meat substitutes, you can enjoy a variety of unique and delicious meat dishes at the venue.
Access: 10 mins walk from Komazawa Daigaku Station
Date: TBA (early May)
Hours: 10:00~21:00 (till 20:00 on the last day)
16. Spring Flower Events
You may have missed cherry blossoms in Tokyo if you are travelling in May, but you’ll still get a chance to see stunning flowers. The Nemophila Harmony at Hitachi Seaside Park is one of the most popular flower events in Japan in Spring, which can be accessed from Tokyo for a day-trip. The best viewing time of Nemophila flowers is usually late April to early May.
-The Great Wisteria Festival
Another great side trip destination from Tokyo in May is Great Wisteria Festival at Ashikaga Flower Park. The park is picked as one of the top 10 international dream destinations by CNN in past. Various kinds of colourful wisteria flowers are displayed at the park including the 150 year-old Great Wisteria. The best viewing time is usually from mid April to mid May.
Check out more things to do in Ashikaga City, Tochigi!
17. Cycling Tour
Spring is the best season to spend time outdoor in Japan, and cycling is one of the best activities in the city. Various sightseeing cycling tours are available in Tokyo today which you can see the best highlights and explore the city in depth in one day while exercising!
Tokyo Historical Bike Tour by Magical Trip is a popular cycling day tour around south of Tokyo (Ryogoku, Tsukiji, Imperial Palace, etc) through 24km with a local guide. You can check more details about the tour via the attached link below and booking with discount is also available!
▼Visiting Tokyo in June??▼
How exciting?? Which events in May do you look forward to most?? For more information about travelling in Japan in May, here are some more articles you should definitely check out 🙂